What is Nucleoplasty (Percutaneous Discectomy)?

Nucleoplasty (Percutaneous Discectomy) is a treatment option for patients suffering back pain caused by a disc herniation (bulging disc) who have not had a positive response to more conventional treatment. The procedure is minimally invasive and is performed in an outpatient setting. Nucleoplasty (Percutaneous Discectomy) involves partial removal of the disc’s nucleus (the center gel-like substance). The procedure involves using a special access needle which is under X-ray guidance. A wand-like device uses a plasma field at a relatively low temperature (40-70 degrees Celsius) to remove some of the disc material and then seal the channel made by the needle. In most cases the patient will be awake but medicated with a mild sedative to help ease anxiety.